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  1. #1
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    2013 SP Epic comp vs Stumpy HT comp vs Stumpy FSR comp

    2013 Specialized 29ers - Epic comp vs Stumpy HT comp vs Stumpy FSR comp??

    Please help me make an educated decision.

    Not a racer. Great climbing on rough terrain is a must. Also would like to tackle more technical sections of trail. Riding in Missouri with some really good rough Ozark terrain. Not really interested in big drops or major rock gardens just typical moderate trails.

    Was originally set on 29er HT bikes for hill climbing capability and light weight. Now late 30s and thinking that full suspension may be the way to go.

    Really like the concept of the Brain on the Epic but I do not know if that should be a deciding factor.

    Any advice? Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    Sounds like Epic country to me.

  3. #3
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    Stumpy FSR EVO

  4. #4
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    I'm from St.Louis, I typically ride on Castlewood, Greenfelder, Lost Valley, Klondike, but if you are not familiar, some of this trails have rock gardens, good climbs, good descends and long cross country sections. I have been riding for 7 years now, and I am riding a 2012 STUMPJUMPER FSR COMP 29 large. The bike is awesome, but my only complain is that it really behaves like a 29er. I feel that I am riding a monster truck. I tested the EPIC on the same trails, the handling was way better than the stumpy, it feels more like a faste 26, but a little short on the travel (front and back).
    BTW, I am considering selling my bike, but I don't know what to buy. I am between the EPIC, Niner Jet 9 and Tallboy AL, so I am on a similar boat.

  5. #5
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    Thanks for advice

    I am OP

    Thanks for advice and please keep more advice coming.

    I am also in St. Louis area. I ride Lost Valley and Matson Hills as often as I can. Also get to Castlewood and other St. Louis trails as often as possible.

    I have heard the same comment about the stumpy FSR.

    I actually have a Stumpjumper HT EVO on order but has been backordered and it may be December before available. That is why I started looking at other options like the Epic.

    I really like the feel of a hard tail, but have heard that the Epic is a full suspension bike with efficiency similar to a hard tail.

    Sounds like that is hard to beat.

    Thanks again.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Free Ride View Post
    I am OP

    Thanks for advice and please keep more advice coming.

    I am also in St. Louis area. I ride Lost Valley and Matson Hills as often as I can. Also get to Castlewood and other St. Louis trails as often as possible.

    I have heard the same comment about the stumpy FSR.

    I actually have a Stumpjumper HT EVO on order but has been backordered and it may be December before available. That is why I started looking at other options like the Epic.

    I really like the feel of a hard tail, but have heard that the Epic is a full suspension bike with efficiency similar to a hard tail.

    Sounds like that is hard to beat.

    Thanks again.
    If you want to test the EPIC 29, Mesa Cycles (Mesa Cycles) has one large 29er which they rent for $50/day, but if you rent on Saturday, you can will return it on Monday (Sunday is closed).BTW, they are selling it for $2400. I think that is a good investment if you are not sure about the EPIC.

  7. #7
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    Go with the Epic, and upgrade to a 120mm fork at the time of purchase. Shouldn't increase price much, and for non-racing, it will really expand the bike's range IMO.

    I raced an Epic two seasons ago, and went another way last season. If I went back to an Epic, it would be with a 120 fork, especially for long endurance races.
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  8. #8
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    had an 2011 epic sold it got a 2012 stumpy fsr
    the stumpy is allot more fun to ride and is a little more plush
    it also climbs better than the epic if it is blown out
    I did have a 120mm fork on my epic and it was not the answer
    I bottomed out the rear shock too often "I'm only a buck 50"
    Sj
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  9. #9
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    I have had my 2012 XXL Stumpjumper FSR 29er for about a year now, and I love it. I think it climbs well. It handles everything I ride in Northwest Washington well. I am pretty much a wheels on the ground rider. I have done an Enduro race on it and also a 30 mile xc race. The bike felt good in both settings. It does feel a bit like a monster truck, but at 6'8" and 230 pounds it is the first mountain bike that I have owned that actually fits me. I have been riding since 1992. By comparison, the bike I had previoulsy was a 2007 XL Norco Six. There is a big difference in the feel between the two bikes. The Norco was nine pounds heavier then the Stumpy and I would have kept it if it had fit better. The Norco was awesome at railing down rough technical trails, no bad lines. The Stumpy is not as plush but does alot of other things far better and I think it is a more versitile bike for me.

  10. #10
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    A couple more thoughts...
    For me, I was going back and forth between a steel hard tail and this bike... In the end I decided that I would go with the full suspension even though I wanted to do a little bit of recreational endurance racing. I figured I am never going to compete so I might as well complete the events in comfort on a full suspension bike. I would stear you toward the Stumpy verses the Epic by that same logic. In the last year I have done numerous 30+ miles rides and sometimes think a hard tail would have been nice but the 130 mm of rear suspension is sure nice...

    I have never been interested in the Brain. It seems like to much could go wrong with it over the long haul. Generally I ride my bike locked out on gravel rails to trails, in pro pedal on climbs and xc trails, and in the full open setting when were going down. I like moving the setting around myself, my brain knows what suspension setting I should be in.

  11. #11
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    I am 45 and in decent shape, I regularly ride my 2011 stumpy EVO hardtail on 30 to 50 mile rides on a combination of rocky singletrack, fireroads and pavement. I have no want or need for a full suspension 29er bike. I like the light weight and responsive nature of this bike. Full suspension with the extra weight and complexity just would not add anything to my 29er riding experience.

    If I get the occasional invite for a ride with lots of drops and really rough / steep terrain I pull out the 26" Trance X2 with some upgrades...but.....the Stumpy works just fine for a majority of the trails in my area. The Trance doesn't get used much since I bought the EVO.

    Buy the hardtail for the type of riding that you described...you will be glad you did
    Last edited by borbntm; 10-04-2012 at 08:26 PM.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by SlowerJoe View Post
    I bottomed out the rear shock too often "I'm only a buck 50"
    Sj
    A good point that I had forgotten about. Within reason, no matter what pressure or sag I set the Epic at, I would bottom pretty frequently on each and every ride, even pretty darn smooth ones.

    I suspect that once the brain opens things up, the mini-shock is not nearly as sophisticated in terms of damping performance as a "real" sized shock.

    Several guys have retrofitted their Epics with full-sized shocks, and report impressive results, but I never got that far, instead opting for a Camber Carbon this season, and being very happy once I installed a CTD rear shock (for racing applications, the RP23 was not nearly firm enough -- that new "C" setting is a godsend on smoother fire road climbs).
    The drive towards achievement and success is the motive power of civilization.

  13. #13
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    My understanding is that the FSR EVO and HT are oriented towards descending and gravity more than trail/XC use. The EPIC is about racing and going fast in a pure XC environment. The Stumpy Comp is in between those extremes.

    The OP gives the impression, at least from what I gather, that he is an XC/trail rider. The EVO has a slacker geometry, more trail, and travel and will likely give more of a monster truck feel than a COMP. Also that geometry will impede climbing as compared to the Comp. OP says great climbing is a must. I'm no expert on these matters but I assume bikes intended to go down by design will struggle a bit more going up.

    The EVO is also 1x10 vs the 2x10 of the Comp. OP doesn't say but is 1x10 ok for his fitness and riding style? A thing to consider.

    I'd definitely recommend talking more at length with the folks at the LBS to ensure that the bike ordered is the one that fits the requirements. When you go to order the things the price point gives the impression that the EVO is just the ultimate Stumpy FSR. In reality it is a different animal and just costs more.

    Good luck either way.

    The Stumpy line has really come into its own and is a good value in that it is a solid performer. While I know it could have better brakes, hubs, etc. it works well and I love my 2013 Stumpy.

    Dan

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  14. #14
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    Not sure what bike you think the HT is, but it's a pure XC race bike.

  15. #15
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    For how you described you'll be using the bike, I would go with the Stumpy FSR.
    FWIW, I love my Epic for the XC racing and would not give it up for that purpose. But for longer, all trail type riding, I like something with just a little more travel and a bit more relaxed fit like the Stumpy.
    Goods luck on your decision.

  16. #16
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    I have owned the HT carbon expert, the Epic comp, and now the SJ FSR Evo expert carbon and the SJ FSR wins hands down for fun.
    Both the SJ HT and the Epic are "faster" and quicker handling, but the Evo is no slouch in the switchbacks and I'm a helluva lot faster going downhill on it than I ever was on either of the other bikes.
    If you spend more time going uphill buy the HT, if you're racing on mixed terrain buy the Epic, but if you're just out to have fun on a bike for God's sake, buy the FSR.

  17. #17
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    Any reason you aren't looking at other brands?

    Seriously, you need to demo a bunch of different bikes before deciding.
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